IPB University Microbiology Expert: Use Masks to Reduce Virus Concentration

The minimum value of viral load or virus concentration in the air is very important to predict the infection of viruses. The minimum value is determined by the amount of aerosol released by infected individuals. The highest risk of getting infected by the virus is a closed room with terrible air circulations (for example elevators), these conditions will significantly increase the viral load.

This was explained by Prof Dr Antonius Suwanto, a professor of IPB University from the Biology Department’s Microbiology Division, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences (FMIPA) in the Webinar Series Mikrobiologi dan Kita (9/7). The event was the result of the collaboration of the  IPB University Post-Graduate Microbiology Study Program  with the Association of Indonesian Microbiologists (Permi) Central and Bogor Branch, Prof Antonius emphasized on the use of masks can drastically reduce infections due to the minimum viral load not being met.

“Aside from that, natural immunities in humans also play a role in the prevention of the virus, that is why, it is important to increase self-immunity. An easy and inexpensive way to do this is by sunbathing to increase vitamin D3 production naturally. Vitamin D3 is linked to the production of Imunoglobulin A (IgA) that plays a role in fighting entering pathogens into body cells. Aside from that, the consumption of fermented foods and probiotics also help to increase the number of IgA in your body,” he further explains.

In that event they also invited another expert in microbiology who is also a professor in IPB University, Prof Dr Lisdar A Manaf who discussed the potential of fungi as immunostimulants and antivirus. Prof Lisdar mentioned that secondary metabolites in fungi cell walls have the potential to be immunostimulants. These compounds are called beta-glucans and they have a role in increasing human immune systems or chitin that helps with digestive systems. “Royal Sun Agaricus Fungi has been cultured in Indonesia with desired features, such as containing beta-glucans that stimulate macrophage functions as a natural killer cell, cell B and cell T. These bioactive compounds are useful in viral infections such as influenza and coronavirus. This compound as a protease inhibitor is also useful to block virus cells from entering the body,” he adds.

Prof Lisdar has said that many researchers are focused on researching fungi from endophilic groups and marine fungi from mangroves and the deep sea because they are rich in bioactive compounds. From 17 types of edible and medicinal fungi, as much as 14 types (82%) has antibacterial and antitumor activities, 11 types (65%) as an antivirus and 10 types (59%) can increase immunity.

For example Ganoderma lucidum or lingzhi that is known to be able to cure a lot of ailments. There are groups of people that make ganoderma tea easily by drying out the body and creating a powder out of it, in certain doses. The fungi can be consumed as food for sustenance or as a tonic.

“We can also extract it to attain certain compounds to be created into supplement,” he adds. (IAAS/RCD)



Published Date : 10-Jul-2020

Resource Person : Prof Dr Lisdar A Manaf

Keyword : Microbiology, Department of Biology, Fungi, Immunity, FMIPA, IPB University, IPB Professor, Ganoderma